Defending Yourself from Bullies: 11 Best Defenses

Want to know the best methods of defending yourself from bullies that every victim of bullying should know? These are the successful defense tactics you need to know about.

defending yourself from bullies

Defending yourself from bullies can be terrifying and if you’re anything like me, you’re researching ways to protect yourself properly. Having once been right where you are now,  I’m giving you the most successful self-protection techniques you need to know and that I and many other overcomers of bullying swear by.

You will learn all about defending yourself from bullies, using best remedies that I and several other targets have taken to free ourselves from bullying once and for all.

After learning about all these strategies, you are going to be able to successfully counter your bullies’ attacks and take back control over your life.

This post is all about defending yourself from bullies, providing you the steps that every young victim of bullying must know.

Defending yourself from bullies and how you do it.

1. Know Your enemy.

This requires that you stand back and OBSERVE the people around you but without looking like you are watching them. Pay close attention to body language, facial expressions and tone of voice. I can’t stress enough the importance of this.

This is how you find out who the trouble makers are. If you see another person gossip and make trouble for others, you can be sure they will do the same to you. This is how you avoid bullies and save yourself a ton of drama.

2. Document everything!

Defending yourself from bullies also demands that you keep a journal and write down every bullying incident. Documenting each and every occurrence serves two purposes:

a. It establishes a written record, which is evidence that is admissible in court in case you decide to sue for damages.

b. Also, it allows you to keep everything organized and explain your side of the story in a clear and intelligible manner. In other words, it keeps you from rambling when reporting the bullying to a school official or company manager.

Always record the incidents using the 5-W method (What, Who, When, Where, Why, and sometimes How). In other words, you must write down the names of not only your bullies, but anyone present when the altercation took place.

Write down what happened and, include the names of authority members (teachers, principal, or any member of authority) present at the time of the incident.

You should also record the date and exact time. Very important!

Don’t forget to jot down where it happened. what happened and if possible, why it happened. Also, record what is said and by whom. Document every… single… detail!!

There will be more on the 5-W method of documentation in a future post.

3. Defending yourself from bullies means that you Don’t reveal any information about yourself that you would not want to be told.

 Never share anything private about yourself to anyone, including your friends. In other words, your business is your business and no one else’s.

Besides, you never know if your friend has another friend who is either your enemy or is somehow closely connected to one of your bullies. Also, if you are the target of bullies, you can be sure that your bullies will, at some point, either try to pry information about you out of your friends or they will turn your friends against you altogether.

Therefore, keep your private business to yourself.

4. Keep a low profile.

Don’t do anything that may undue attention to yourself. Also, stay away from places the bullies may gather.

Think, “Out of sight, out of mind.” Just don’t make it obvious to your bullies that you are ducking and dodging them. I avoided several confrontations by simply laying low.

Lastly, know that avoiding toxic bullies is not cowardice, it’s smarts.

5. Save any threatening texts, emails, and/or voice mails for evidence.

if possible, set your cellphone to record during any altercation brought on by a bully, provided it is hidden in your pocket. You certainly do not want the bully to know what you are doing.

Furthermore, keep your composure and be sure not to tarnish the recording by yelling or using foul language. The last thing you want is to give your bullies ammunition to do the old DARVO switcheroo and make you out to be the bully.

If you happen not to have a cellphone, keep a digital recorder handy (if possible) and be ready to record as soon as the torment starts.

However, before you record the bullying, make absolute sure you know the laws in your state concerning recordings. In some states, recording of others are against the law and your bullies would love nothing more than to have an excuse to sue you.

Again, make sure you get abreast to the laws in your state!

6. Defending yourself from bullies also means to never brag about any evidence you have against your bullies.

It just isn’t smart. Again, bullies have a knack for prying information out of people, even your friends.

Moreover, they can also turn your friends against you, making them more than happy to volunteer the information. Don’t do it!

Anytime you are a target of bullies, you are in no position to trust anyone!

7. Call the bully out in front of an audience, especially those in authority.

This is risky and could bring retaliation later. However, the bullies will also know that you are on to them and you just might intimidate them enough that they will leave you alone.

This happened for me on a few occasions. However, keep in mind that this doesn’t happen for everyone.

Calling the bullies out in front of people can also have the opposite effect.  Bullies absolutely despise humiliation, especially by anyone they deem inferior and they will only be that much more determined to get you.

So, pick and choose your battles wisely. Access the bully’s personality and the situation carefully before you decide to do this.

8. Have a strong set of beliefs and principles.

Defending yourself from bullies doesn’t only take physical strength, it takes a lot of mental toughness as well. When you have a strong set of beliefs and principles, you’re least likely to fall for lies and name-calling your bullies try to bombard you with.

Therefore, you’re least likely to allow them to influence how you see yourself or to cause you to make decisions and choices based on their approval. Instead, you will do what you know is best for you and what makes you feel happier and most alive.

9. be okay with who you are.

This is, perhaps, the most fundamental rule of all because, when you aren’t comfortable with yourself, you will be least likely to defend yourself. Realize that you are perfect just the way The Creator made you.

However, don’t confuse low self-esteem with the desire to improve yourself. Know that it’s okay if you strive for self-betterment.

We all have goals and aspirations. That goes for you, me, and everyone. The problem comes when you allow others’ opinions of you to change the way you view yourself.

Never put yourself down because bullies and everyone else is putting you down. In other words, no matter what they say or how they act toward you, do not, under any circumstances, lose sight of your worth.

Continue to value yourself and refrain from thinking that you should be like someone else. You are you. Be okay with it.

The trick is to practice self-acceptance and self-love while you improve.

10. walk away from All toxic people

Toxic people, AKA bullies, abusers, users, and losers, serve no purpose but to bring you down and keep you there. These people can also be fakes who pose as your friends.

Therefore, know that anyone who even subtly insults, guilt trips, or gaslights you does not deserve one micro-second of your time. You’d much rather be alone than with fake friends who throw zingers and backhanded compliments your way.

You’ll be much happier and at ease without them in your life. You’d much rather be alone than with people who make you feel like you don’t belong. So, be patient and better friends will come along. I promise you!

11. If a bully physically attacks you, hit them back.

This seems to be the question on everyone’s mind these days, especially in the notoriously politically correct climate in which we live. “Should I hit back if one of my bullies hits me?”

My answer is, “‘Damn right you should!

Although the media, politicians, and even big-name celebrities and influencers vehemently discourage fighting violence with violence, should you actually listen to them?

You hear school officials, managers, police personal, and others in positions of authority make statements, such as:

“Two wrongs don’t make a right.”
“Turn the other cheek.”
“Don’t stoop to the bully’s level.”

And the all-time favorite,
“Be the bigger person and walk away.”

But what if one of your bullies won’t let you be the bigger person and walk away? Then, what?

Understand that bullies don’t understand politeness, civility, nor diplomacy. The only language they know is raw power and brute strength. Therefore, when a bully physically attacks you, you have a God-given, primal right to defend yourself from being harmed. I state this with full conviction!

Yeah. I know it isn’t the “politically correct” thing to do. But when someone is harming you, all that jazz about political correctness and being the bigger person goes out the window, and the gloves are off.

The only thing you should think of at this point is how to disable your attacker. Additionally, you want to give them such a bad memory that they’ll never even think about laying so much as a finger on you again.

You aren’t a troublemaker or a brute for this. It’s self-defense and you’re well within your rights to defend yourself when someone attacks you.

Therefore, if a bully hits you first, haul off and knock their block off! And when you do, don’t just give him a love pat. Deck the creep with the strength of your entire body.

Your counter punch should be so hard that you knock the bully down and they have difficulty getting back up. Then unleash a hail of hard licks so that he doesn’t get up. Because once they get up, the person will charge you!

Again, self-defense is not a crime, it’s a right when a bully attacks you.

This post was all about defending yourself against bullies to help you ensure your safety and peace of mind.

Related posts you’ll enjoy:

1. 4 Powerful Ways to Handle Physical Bullies

2. The Mindset Behind Physical Violence

3. Bullying and the Fight or Flight Response

4 Powerful Ways to Handle Physical Bullies

bullying bullied victim physical

Many bullies bully their targets by using physical violence and force, or the threat of it. Nobody wants a bully to harm them and you shouldn’t feel any shame nor blame in that.  So, instead of just standing there and letting the bully pound on you or continue to threaten you, you must defend yourself. But if you aren’t the kind who believes in throwing punches, how do you protect yourself without resorting to violence?

Here are a few ways:

1. Talk your way out of the altercation.

You do this by giving the bully a small dose of (false) empathy and sympathy. Pretend like you feel bad for “the poor guy” and use the appropriate tone of voice and body language to make it sound convincing. And your body language and tone should match your words and convey empathy.

For example, you can begin with, “I understand why your upset about XYZ…” then state your case.

physical bullying

But don’t overdo it! Don’t say any more than what you need to say, don’t talk too fast or look nervous. The last thing you want is to come off like you’re trying too hard because the bully will only think you’re scared or fake.

2. If talking doesn’t work, leave the situation (if possible).

Find a way to get way away from the person. If you can’t get away because the bully has either cornered or trapped you, then, by all means, fight your way free if you have to. Although you may not want to resort to hitting back, sometimes you have no choice. You either fight or get your butt handed to you.

3. Call for help. Call 911 and get the police involved.

The bully may get away with it, but at least you will have a record of the call and a police report on file should the bully come after you again.

bullying fighting

4. If all else fails, FIGHT!

Sock the bully in the nose! Sometimes, you must use the last resort for self-defense. You’ve tried everything else so you have a record on the bully. Chances are that others will know you fought in self-defense and give you a pass, which is another benefit to establishing a recorded history of your bully’s bad behavior.

You can’t go wrong with establishing a recorded history of bad behavior. A trail of records will go a long way in protecting you. Also, it helps to have foreknowledge of the 3 signs that verbal abuse will turn physical.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

You Know Bullying When You Feel It

dreamstime_s_93685680

One of the saddest things about bullying is the confusion it often brings. Many targets of bullying are confused and misled as to whether or not they are legitimately being bullied or only being paranoid.

Oftentimes, when an individual defends themselves against a bully, others may gaslight the person by either trivializing the bullying or dismissing it. They tell the target that “it’s only in your mind” or “you’re just being paranoid”. Half the time, people convince the target of the above statements, which only forces him to endure the torment in silence. Bullying cannot thrive without silence.

Bullying Cannot Thrive Without Silence

Therefore, the bully is let off the hook and is free to target the same individual again in the future. The bully gets the message loud and clear that it’s okay to target this person simply because they can – and with impunity.

After so long, the target begins to feel as if it is somehow wrong to report and stand up to bullies. the person then questions their own sanity, thinking, “Maybe it really is only in my mind.” and often grows silent for fear of being gaslighted and seen as “paranoid”, “crazy”, “overly sensitive” or other labels that undermine and steal their voice.

Bullying is Not Only In YOur Mind.

If you’re a target of these mind games, let me assure you: It’s NOT only in your imagination. You are not being overly sensitive. You are not being a wimp, wuss, crybaby, crazy or whatever else unsavory people may call you.

Always remember that bullies are very skilled and convincing liars. You always know when something does not feel good. Your brain and your gut always let you know when something isn’t right!

You can see it in the way certain people cut their eyes at you.

You can see and hear them talking through their teeth.

Also, you can hear the short and cold tone in their voices.

You can feel, deep down in your gut, the nasty vibes they exude.

This is why you should always listen to your gut feeling because it is never wrong. Eighty-six those people, pronto!

Defending their rights concept

Anyone who causes you to feel bad does not deserve the time of day from you.

It does not matter if they are rich, smart, good looking, popular, successful, cool or tough. If they cause you to feel less than, ditch them! Weed. Them. Out! They are not worthy of even being in your presence. Never allow anyone to violate your boundaries, whether physical or psychological. Also, never allow anyone to silence you. Speak out! Refuse their gaslighting.

Self awareness is key, as is awareness of everyone and everything around you. Setting boundaries is equally important. You must get to know yourself. Listen to your body and the sensations you feel.

It is imperative that you get absolutely clear on what you will and will not accept. Only then will you be able to tell the difference and send your bullies packing.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Bullying and the Fight or Flight Response

upshot of attacker with his foot raised to stomp you

Bullying and the fight or flight response go hand in hand.

According to the Psychology Tools website, “The fight or flight response is an automatic physiological reaction to an event that is perceived as stressful or frightening. The perception of threat activates the sympathetic nervous system and triggers an acute stress response that prepares the body to fight or flee. These responses are evolutionary adaptations to increase chances of survival in threatening situations.” ( https://www.psychologytools.com/resource/fight-or-flight-response/ )

Any time bullies target a person with relentless bullying at work or school over an extended period of time, they force that person into a constant state of high alert. Although useful in short, immediate circumstances, this hyper-vigilance is unhealthy if the person remains in this state for too long, causing stomach issues, headaches, and fatigue, among many other ailments.

Even worse, facing continuous danger can also cause the person to overreact in response to certain occurrences.

The Fight or Flight Response is Innate. Every Creature on earth has it.

Every living creature has an innate and perfectly natural physiological reaction in the event of a threat or attack. Called the Fight or Flight Response, it protects us from harm in dangerous situations through the release of adrenaline. When adrenaline is released into the blood, it’s next to impossible not to do either of two things- fight or flee.

Fight or Flight sign showing a man with fists raised and another running away

When others are consistently bullying and abusing you during school or anywhere, escape is usually not an option. Your bullies will corner, surround, or back you into a wall or some other large object. With flight cut off to you as an option, what do you have left? Fight! Long-term bullying can cause a person to live on this adrenaline every day, all day long. All your aggressors have to do is to come around you and they can put your body and mind on constant alert. It’s a horrible way to live.

Getting on the school bus and walking through the entrance to the school can feel like a death march. Moreover, horrible headaches and violent nausea will plague many targets.

Here is an excerpt on the subject from my book:

“I recall an afternoon in English class when my mouth and eyes began to water. I swallowed hard to control my gag reflexes as I approached the teacher’s desk to ask to be excused to the bathroom.

‘What do you want?’ Mrs. Caraway asked rudely.
‘I don’t feel good.’ I replied.

Without a word, she gave me the hall pass, and I scurried my way to the girls’ room, I barely made it to the first stall before launching a stream of the bitterest, most horrible tasting green liquid into the toilet.

man balled up in a corner with the words, claustrophobia, stress, panic, depression, anxiety, and fear on the wall behind him

A long series of dry heaves followed, which were quite painful. Instead of making me feel better, the vomiting only did the opposite, and my headache became next to unbearable.

I’ll never forget the sound of the bathroom door as it flung open and the teacher stormed in, demanding to know why I was taking so long. I began to cry and, in between gags and wretches, pleaded with her to let me go to the office and call my grandmother….”

She accused me of making myself vomit so that I could go home early.

targets live in a constant state of survival mode.

Even teachers can join the other kids against you once they hear enough rumors and falsehoods bullies spread about you. This can place you in a very lonely and heartbreaking position.

As time goes on, the fear of going to school and having to face their megalomaniac classmates grows. It’d like an infected tumor that grows bigger with each passing day. A target’s stomach draws up every morning when they set foot on a school bus.

The next eight hours are like walking through a minefield, never knowing when your next step could mean BOOM! Others begin hitting, shoving, kicking, or bombarding the target with a torrent of taunts, insults, and names. It is a situation they see no end to, and to say that they are afraid is an understatement. Targets are petrified.

Fenced off field with sign on fence warning of mines

Most never think of the magnitude of fear the target must live with. Also, they don’t think of the health consequences of living in that perpetual state of fight or flight. The impact on the target’s physical health may not show up right away. However, it may rear its ugly head later in life.

But this doesn’t only happen in school; it happens in the workplace also. What people once believed to only happen to school-aged people also happens to adults in the workplace. Bullying knows no age group.

authority figures usually blame targets for defending themselves.

Many targets get into serious trouble when the bullying finally escalates and becomes physical. Every day, school staff unjustly suspend or expel innocent targets are unjustly from school for exercising their rights to self-defense.  Moreover, managers in the workplace terminate bullying targets from work because bullies force them into fight mode to defend themselves.

Bullies have a real flair for charming and seducing supervisors, managers, teachers, and staff. They lie very convincingly and making the target look like the aggressor. Targets are often severely punished for nothing more than trying to protect themselves. Whereas, bullies are either given a slap on the wrist or escape with complete impunity. In short, the target has no support whatsoever!

School staff and workplace management should know well that, just like all God’s creatures, bullying targets have this fight or flight instinct. Therefore, they have the right to defend themselves if running is not an option.

Cornered dog feeling threatened and getting ready to bite you

And when bullies are attacking the target left and right and you have no support, it’s left solely up to them to take care of themselves in bullying situations.

It’s only natural that if you corner a dog and kick it enough times, sooner or later, you’ll get bit!

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Why Bullies Sometimes Call You “Uppity”

Snobby group of cliquey girls with their ringleader pointing at you

Ever wonder why bullies sometimes call you “uppity?”

First, let’s examine the word, “uppity.” Uppity means arrogant, haughty, or pompous. It’s used to describe a person who thinks they are better than everyone else. However, a bully may label you “uppity, even though it isn’t who you are.

Understand that a bully’s definition of the word goes much deeper. You must look at the context in which the term is being used. Also, look at the circumstances which prompted the bully to make such a judgement of you. What would motivate a bully to refer to you as “uppity?”

Here are 3 reasons why bullies often accuse targets of being uppity:

Woman screaming and pointing an accusing finger at you

  1. The target displays confidence.

Confidence is power. When a person is confident and knows who they are, they’re least likely to allow others to control them. This is a huge threat to the bully’s power. Therefore, bullies will give targets the “uppity” label in hopes that the target will question themselves or worse, believe it, then feel guilty for it.

If the target falls for this BS and believes it, he will automatically “tone it down.” Consequently, he will unwittingly give the bullies the green light to gradually heap on more and more abuse.

Remember that a bully’s opinion of you means nothing unless you allow it to. Never buy into it! Keep your confidence no matter what!

Marginalized man putting out hands to block the fingers that are pointed at him

  1. The target refuses to comply with the bullies’ demands.

 Defiance is a huge threat to the bullies’ power. When a target refuses to comply with the bullies’ demands, mandates, or orders, he, in essence, gives the bully the middle finger. Then, he goes on doing what he wants and not what the bullies want him to do.

Ouch! This is painful to bullies. Why? Because, if the target doesn’t comply, then others just might feel emboldened not to comply. Defiance has a way of spreading and, once it spreads, the bully loses power. Bullies know this and, therefore, double down by labelling the target as uppity (among other labels).

Kids fighting with the quote, "Never fight until you have to. But when it's time to fight, you fight like you're the third monkey on the ramp to Noah's Ark... and brother, it's startin' to rain."

  1. The target defends himself.

When the target stands up for himself, this is also a threat to the bullies’ power. Why? Because the target just might put them in their place and make them look like punks. Therefore, the target takes back his power, leaving the bullies looking slack jawed and stupid. As a result, some bullies will retaliate to reinforce their dominance.

Therefore, you must keep your power. Resist the urge to comply. Push back when bullies attempt to abuse you. They may retaliate, but in you dig your heels in and continue to stand your ground, you keep your personal power, and with it, your self-esteem.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Be Careful What You Put Up With

Quote, "I deserve the best in life."

It’s best to begin standing up for yourself in the early stages or you’ll come across as a doormat to others. You will teach them how to treat you based on what they see. Sadly, many targets of bullying do not realize this until the bullying gets so out of control that their lives are in danger. By then, it’s usually too late to change anything and the only option left is for target to remove him/herself from the environment.

Furthermore, bullying always escalates and the more you ignore it, deny it, and tolerate it, the more emboldened, brazen, and full of themselves the bullies become until they become drunk on their own power. As a result, the abuse will get out of control and you’re most likely to end of getting severely hurt or worse.

Quote, "Be good to yourself today."

bullying is addictive because its all about power.

Bullying is like a drug. As we know, it takes one smoke, one drink, or one snort or two for a person to become hooked. Afterwards, they always want more. Likewise, it’s the same with bullying. All it takes is one backhanded compliment, one offhand comment, or one insult or two to get the target to react.  When the bullies get the reaction they want, they get that initial power high. Then, they always come back for more.

Also, drug addicts slowly build a tolerance to the drug, and, as time goes on, they need a bigger dose. First, they need one milligram, then two, then four, then eight, and on it goes. It’s no different with bullies. Just as it is with drug addicts with their drugs, bullies escalate the bullying, then escalate it further to keep getting that rush of power.

Quote, "Be real, be true, be yourself."

Bullying only escalates because, with time, bullies need bigger and bigger doses of power.

First, they start with offhand comments, backhanded compliments, and petty insults. Also, they may smear you to others and give you the silent treatment. When these lose their thrill, they escalate to yelling, cursing, and severe name-calling. Therefore, the verbal assaults become more blatant and hurtful.

Next, when blatant verbal abuse loses its luster, the bullying progresses to borderline physical abuse. Bullies will (accidentally on purpose) trip the target, lightly shove him, or run into him in the hallway.

Later, when bullies can no longer get their power rush from light physical bullying, they take it up, yet, another notch. They’ll progress to more obvious physical beatings- slapping, punching, choking, kicking, etc.

Once they get bored with this, they’ll begin using weapons. Bullies will hit with textbooks, slam heads against lockers or the sides of vehicles. Afterwards, they’ll use sticks, bottles, pipes, baseball bats, and so on.

Quote, "A lack of boundaries invites a lack of respect."

boundaries, respect yourself

So, understand that bullying and abuse always- always…escalates! In other words, it always gets worse and more severe. It also becomes more frequent!

The best time to stand up to bullying is during its earliest stages.

I’ve said it before, bullying is best countered and quashed in the earliest stages of it. The best time to stand up for yourself is during the “testing phrase”- when bullies are testing you to see what how you will react and what you’ll allow them to get away with.

You must stand up to bullies and abusers before they’ve had time to grow accustomed to abusing you.

Treat yourself better by not allowing others to abuse you, because how you treat yourself shows in how you allow others to treat you. Remember that you deserve better and you don’t have to put up with abuse from anyone.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Physical Bullying: Should You Hit Back?

It seems to be the question on everyone’s mind these days, especially in the notoriously politically correct climate in which we live. The media and politicians vehemently discourage fighting violence with violence. You’ll hear statements from others, such as:

“Two wrongs don’t make a right.”
“Turn the other cheek.”
“Don’t stoop to the bully’s level.”
And the all-time favorite,
“Be the bigger person and walk away.”

I’ve heard them all.

self defense

Yes, you should try more peaceful ways first, like walking away from the bully or reporting it to someone in power. However, what if the more peaceful solutions don’t work?

If you don’t stand up for yourself, the bully will only continue to come after you and hurt you. Also, everyone who knows you will see you as a punching bag at school and everywhere else. Because when word gets around that one person can hit you and get away with it, everyone else will think they can too. They’ll peg you as the school or the community whipping boy. That’s no way to live.

In the middle of a physical attack, the last resort is the only option you take.

So, here it is:

When a bully physically attacks you, you have a God-given, primal, animal right to defend yourself from being harmed. I state this with full conviction!

Therefore, if a bully hits you first, haul off and knock his block off! And when you do, don’t just give him a love pat. Deck the creep with the strength of your entire body- hit so hard that the bully has difficulty getting back up. Then unleash a hail of hard licks so that he doesn’t get up. Because once the bully gets up, he will charge you!

Yeah. I know it isn’t the “politically correct” thing to do. But when someone is harming you, all that jazz about political correctness and being the bigger person goes out the window, and the gloves are off.

Make them Not want to put their hands on you ever again!

The only thing you should think of at this point is how to disable the bully. Additionally, you want to give him such a bad memory that he’ll never even think about coming for you again. You aren’t a troublemaker or a brute for this, folks! It’s called self-defense!

However, this doesn’t mean that you bring a gun or other deadly weapon. Lethal weapons will only kill someone, and put you behind bars for the rest of your life. Never EVER carry a gun to school! It’s much better to put up your dukes and throw down when you must.

Again, punch the bully’s lights out! School stuff may suspend you from school, and managers may fire you from work. You may even go to jail for a night or two. However, people are much more vicious with physical attacks nowadays. Furthermore,  if you just let someone smack you around, they’ll only intensify the beatings until they hurt you bad enough to send you to the hospital or worse! And I’d much rather them suspend me, fire me, or take me to jail than to spend a month in the hospital or end up six feet under.

You may not condone fighting but sometimes there’s no other option.

Nevertheless, you may not condone fighting. Although you may need to fight many times in school, you may hate it each time you have to. However, when you’re a 5’4″, 120-pound girl being jumped and most of the time by multiple assailants, it may be your only option. If you are a small-built male and the attacker is much bigger than you, it’s not the time to play patty-cake. There will be times when you’re boxed in and cannot go anywhere.

When there’s no other choice, it’s either fight or risk your bullies possibly maiming or killing you. Sometimes the last resort is the only way to protect yourself. You must let the bully know that you’re not the one to mess with and that you aren’t afraid to fight back if necessary.

There will be others who may disagree with this post, and that’s okay. I am very thick-skinned now and rarely do I get offended. I can agree to disagree. But I will do what I have to do to protect my well-being and my life if ever I’m in physical danger.

So, if all else fails, go ahead and whoop that ***!

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Feel free to comment below.

Meet Your Bullies Where They Are

“What does this mean?” You may ask. It means that you must speak to the bully in the only language they understand.

Put simpler, when a bully is in your face, they will go no holds barred and you can’t afford to be nice about it. There is no being polite. There is no way to handle a bully “nicely” because they will only see that as weakness and use it to their advantage. Also, there is no being quiet because a bully will take your silence as being afraid.

In other words, never try to handle a bully politely. Again, you must speak to the bully in the only language they understand. And what they don’t understand is nice and polite.

For example, the bully is in your personal space and they’re cursing you out. That’s when you put your hand out like a traffic cop. Then, you tell them in no uncertain terms to get the hell out of your face.

Sometimes, nice and polite doesn’t work

Understand that once you’ve done everything to try and defuse the situation peacefully and the bully keeps coming back, it’s time to get down and dirty. Remember that you’re in a battle and when you’re in a battle, there’s no time to hold back and try to be the bigger person. Because when it reaches this level, that’s when things can get dangerous fast.

You must be willing to go off on the bully and think nothing of it. You have to call them out and you can’t do it being nice. Sometimes you need to get nasty. There are times you must get just as dirty as they do and to hell with what anyone else thinks. You’re in a situation where you could get hurt and you must protect yourself by any means necessary but legal. And self-defense is legal.

Remember that the only rights you have are those you fight for.

This is not the time to be concerned with what people think

In school, I have classmates tell me, “You shouldn’t have cursed so-and-so out because you only stoop to their (the bullies’) level.” Really? However, it’s funny how they never said a word to the bully, who had me backed in a corner and was unloading on me and all of a sudden, I was the bad guy for using bad words.

Realize that when you’re forced to get just as nasty as a bully, there will be people who try to tell you the same thing. Instead of worrying about their reaction, always come back with, “Funny, you never said a word during all the times they were doing the same to me, so you have nothing to say about my behavior. Now, get lost!” And say it with conviction and without guilt.

“It’s not ladylike,” they say? Well, it’s not ladylike for the bully either. It goes both ways.

It’s about putting yourself before them

Tell them how you feel and what you think of them because you can’t be nice when you’re dealing with people who wish to harm you. You have to get funky with it! You must put your bitch-face on when things get hot. When some schmuck is in your face, nice and polite goes out the window.

And once they find out that you aren’t as weak as they thought, they just might back off and think twice before confronting you again.

Therefore, meet the bully where they are.

When You Assert Boundaries, Get Ready for People to Accuse You of Having “an Attitude.” (Part 2)

(Continued from Part 1 last month)

Your boundaries and standards are the invisible fortresses surrounding you with protection. They keep you safe from harm. When you set boundaries, it means that you don’t allow others to take advantage of you. It also means that you refuse to be a pushover and won’t let other people make you do things that aren’t in line with your goals, values, morals, or convictions. In short, you don’t allow yourself to be manipulated.

And it requires that you call out anyone who tries to stick so much as one knee, one foot,  or one toe over those boundaries. You’re assertive but not overly aggressive. You’re strong but not overbearing. When you say no, you mean it, and you say it without feeling guilty over not saying yes. And when you do say yes to others, you can do it without saying no to yourself.

Sadly, it can be hard to set boundaries and standards, especially when dealing with overly-aggressive bullies who have anger issues. Our first instinct is to protect ourselves any way we can- even if it means we must appease these people to ensure our safety.

Many targets have zero boundaries and feel that to keep from being bullied worse than they already do, they must always bend over backward to make sure the people around them feel comfortable and at ease, which is wrong and a horrible way to live!

And sadly, that only works temporarily because bullies and abusers always come back for more.

Many targets don’t feel strong enough to keep invaders out of their bubble. And it’s because of this that they feel guilty and like failures when they’re unable to enforce their boundaries and standards. Targets also feel as if they’ve let themselves down, and, let me tell ya! It’s the worst feeling in the world.

I want you to understand that, no matter what others may tell you or how they may act, it’s okay to refuse their mistreatment and disrespect. It’s okay to say no to bullying by those who insist they have the right to cross your boundaries and invade your space physically, socially, psychologically, or spiritually. Know that you deserve a seat at the table of life, not one in the corner.

Setting boundaries and standards is not having an“attitude.” It’s your right! It would be best if you accepted that any limitations you put in place will get a ton of resistance. So, take this as a given! And again, look at it this way. The resistance you will get will be a sign of who your real friends aren’t.

Resistance is soooo telling! It can help you find out who’s really for your good and who isn’t.

It’s never good to be a yes-person, nor is it smart. Caring about others is great but caring too much is unhealthy. Boundaries and standards are needed because, without them, you subject yourself to living your life on autopilot- you’re a car without a steering wheel- a ship without a rudder!

But with them, you have a rudder, and you can chart your life’s course. The winds and currents may change, and the waters get rough, and you may indeed go off course, but you’ll still have some degree of direction. In setting boundaries and standards, you’re not completely powerless over what happens to you. You have some say over your destiny.

That’s why it’s so crucial that you stand in your power and speak your truth. Never dumb yourself down and make yourself less than the awesome person you are. Never settle for less than what you want and deserve.

Put yourself first instead of everyone else before you. Stop being a people pleaser. Stop putting your wants and needs on the back burner to keep others satisfied. It would be best if you practice self-love and self-care.

Accept that people won’t handle it well and be willing to let them go because they don’t deserve a seat at your table. And once you do, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how much better life gets and how many people of integrity and sound quality come into your life. And I can say this from experience.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

When You Assert Boundaries, Get Ready for People to Accuse You of Having “an Attitude.”

Girl sitting on the ground and drawing personal space. Selective focus

Many times, when we set boundaries and refuse to lower our standards, we’re accused of having “an attitude.” Lord only knows how many times I got that response when I either said no to something I didn’t like or refused to be manipulated or to take abuse. Therefore, it’s better to accept, even embrace, the reality that others will see you as doing just that- having an attitude when you stand on your principles.

Toxic teachers will assume that you’re insubordinate. Abusive managers and supervisors will think you’re not a team player, and bullying peers will see you as a ‘difficult’ person to be around, and that’s only a very mild version of what they may call you.

Understand that anytime we enforce our boundaries and standards, we become threats to abusers. We expose the manipulative people in our lives through the limits we set and see them more clearly. Why? Because we force them to tell off on themselves through their very reactions toward us.

Through having boundaries and standards, we can better tell the difference between real friends and fake ones. We can better see which people are truly for us and value our friendship and which ones are only in our lives because they want something from us.

Like all abusers, bullies feel entitled to devalue you and expect you to “just go with the flow” and not object to it. With these types of people, your healthy boundaries and standards are an insult to them. Why? Because they don’t recognize limits.

In their minds, anything goes, and the world and everything in it is one big free-for-all. In other words, any rules, laws, or limits don’t apply to them.

Bullies and frenemies believe they should have carte blanche to treat you any way they choose. They get super offended when you get enough of their abuse and finally have the courage to put your foot down. Accept that you will lose people you think are friends when you establish boundaries and standards. And they will often be the people you’d never expect.

But realize that these peoples’ condescension and dismissal are only proof of their discomfort and their only recourse. Bullies can’t handle an assertive person of incredible strength because they can never meet them on their level.

Also, understand that you cannot grow, be safe, or be free if you don’t set boundaries, and in many cases, people go out of their way to prevent targets of bullying and abuse from imposing any limits. It seems that boundaries and standards are okay for anyone else but strictly prohibited for targets.

But realize that you cannot continue to live your life as a doormat. Therefore,  you must dig deep and pull out the courage to establish your boundaries, which include,

Physical boundaries

Psychological boundaries

Time boundaries

No entry sign with barrier tape

Material boundaries

Intellectual boundaries

You are a flesh-and-blood human being who has rights! And sometimes, you must “cop an attitude” to defend those rights and enforce your boundaries from relentless bullies and other fakers who won’t take no from an answer and continue to violate them.

When you set firm boundaries and standards and enforce them, you protect your physical well-being, emotional health, self-esteem, and identity from anyone who seeks to destroy them. You make yourself an individual human being who asserts your right to make your own choices and decisions.

(Continued in Part 2 Next month)

It’s Up to You to Protect Yourself

If you’re a target of bullying, can you truly and totally rely on people in authority to help you? Can you rely on them to do something about the bullying you suffer and hold those who are bullying you to account for their horrible behavior? Can you rely on others to bring you justice?

I used to be all about laws against bullying and yes, the idea sounds great. I won’t pretend it doesn’t. However, I’m beginning to gravitate away from making bullying a crime. Why? Because most people aren’t going to protect targets until it happens to them or one of theirs. And even then, that’s still debatable.

Let’s Stop Relying too Much on Others

We cannot rely too much on laws and policies because they’re not worth the paper they’re written on. Entities, such as schools and workplaces, can write all the rules and policies against bullying they want. But until they enforce those policies, they’re only as cheap as the ink and paper administrators use to make them.

What good are laws and policies if these entities don’t enforce them? At what point do we stop relying on the system to protect us and begin protecting ourselves?

Understand that, no matter what anyone says, you don’t have to put up with anyone else’s crap. Therefore, it’s up to you to stand up to bullies and do it properly. And if defending yourself doesn’t work, you have the option to remove yourself from the situation and environment.

We Must Learn to Take Care of Ourselves

Here’s another reason I’m gravitating away from making bullying a crime: It’s because most seasoned bullies have ways of making innocent targets look like the bullies. Therefore, if lawmakers make bullying an imprisonable crime, many innocent targets would end up behind bars. Because, again, bullies, especially narcissistic bullies have a flare for flipping the script and, very convincingly, painting the target as the bad guy.

Too many targets have been conditioned to think that self-defense is wrong and it isn’t. And the people who condition these targets are often bullies themselves. Therefore, if bullies target you for bullying, you must know your enemies. You must do a lot of study and research on bullies, then use the knowledge you gain to outmaneuver them.

Also, yiu must do your own investigation and gather your own evidence. That means detailed documentation. Moreover, you may need to use the last resort and bust the bully in the mouth if all else fails and the bully tries to physically attack you. It’s the only way you can effectively defend yourself. Remember!

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Being a Target versus Being a Victim

Many people are under the assumption that being a target and being a victim are one and the same. However, they’re quite different and have different meanings.

It has been almost six years since the publication of my book, “From Victim to Victor (A Survivor’s True Story of Her Experiences with School Bullying).” Since then, I’ve learned so much and one of the things I’ve learned is the difference between a target and a victim. So, was I ever really a victim? No. I was, however, a target.

Notice the difference in the actual meanings between the terms, “target” and “victim.”

A target is a mark you aim at- as in a shooter aiming his gun at targets at a gun shooting range for practice.

A victim is a person or animal who others kill and sacrifice. When someone is sacrificed, they assume the blame and punishment for the sins and shortcomings of others.

Choose Your Words Carefully

Words have enormous power- more so than most realize. Therefore, I stopped using the word “victim” to describe people others bully and abuse and replaced it with the word, “target.”

Being a target is much more empowering than being a victim. A target can defend themselves. Whereas a victim cannot. A victim is powerless to do anything about their situation. There’s no power nor dignity in being a victim. However, when a person is a target, they maintain some power and dignity. In that, they lessen the impact of the bullying on their mental health.

If we can change the way we view ourselves and see our bullies exactly for who and what they are, they will have little control over us. Moreover, we’re less likely to allow their words and behavior to get into our heads.

A target is a person chosen by bullies to be a perceived enemy to attack. On the other hand, a victim is a person bullies harm, oppress, and destroy.

The word victim says that you don’t stand up for yourself but only capitulate. But the word target says that, although people attack you on a regular basis, you don’t give into fear and stand up for yourself no matter what it may cost you.

Your Choice of Words Can Have Consequences You Don’t Realize

When you view yourself as a victim, you give your bullies exactly what they want- power over your life. You, in essence, surrender yourself to them. Consequently, you will most likely to suffer physical and/or psychological damage.

On the other hand, when you see yourself as a target, you won’t acquiesce, and you’re least likely to take the bully’s behavior personally. Moreover, when you have a target mentality instead of a victim mentality, you buffer your self-esteem from the attacks and salvage your overall mental health. You maintain your personal power. You take control of your life and refuse to allow anyone to make you, their victim.

For example, I’ve witnessed both in movies and in real life, incidences of bullying where the bully would tell the target, “I’m going to make you, my bitch!” In other words, his victim.

This should give you a better understanding of why you should see yourself as a target rather than a victim. Because you are nobody’s bitch! Nope! You’re no bitch at all! You are a fighter, a warrior, a lion!

Realize that your bullies’ goal is to control you. And if you see yourself as a victim, you weaken yourself. Thus, you play right into your bullies’ hands. But when you refuse to become a victim, you refuse to allow them to take control over your life.

You’re a Target, Not a Victim!

It’s not my intention to minimize any suffering you’ve endured at the hands of your bullies. Bullying hurts, no doubt about it! And I feel your pain. So, know that everything you’ve gone through is real and your story is valid and worthy of being told and heard.

However, I want you to understand this. If you’re the object of bullying, you are a target, yes, but you don’t have to be a victim.

Think about it, victims accept responsibility for things they have no control over. They take blame for evils they never committed nor took part in. And when they carry these burdens that aren’t theirs to carry, they end up paying debts they don’t owe.

Here’s an example. A bully blames his target for his own anger, insecurity, jealousy, and incompetence. And it comes out in the bully’s behavior when he bullies that person. Then later the bully and others may gaslight the target when he speaks out.

Another example would be that a rapist wants to make their rape target responsible for their own sexual frustration, anger, and hunger for power by raping their target. Then, later, the target is presumed to be at fault for the rapist’s behavior by the defense attorneys in court.

A Target Endures Bullying but Refuses to Become a Victim

Sure, people hurl blame at targets just as they do at victims. However, the difference between a victim and a target is that the victim accepts the blame and blames himself for what happened to him then spirals downhill into depression, regret, and self-hatred. Whereas a target refuses to accept the blame because he knows with every fiber of his being that it is his attackers who are in the wrong.

He sees his attackers for the cowards they are. Therefore, he sees the incessant gaslighting as proof that they’re full of it and are only trying to cover their butts because they’re afraid of exposure. A target refuses to be made a victim!

You see, it’s all in how we see ourselves. And how we see ourselves is determined by the inner dialogue we have- the words we use when we think and speak to ourselves. And it can be the difference between living in a hell of depression and self-loathing or enjoying a heaven of self-love and acceptance and refusing to be destroyed despite the attacks and pain bullies inflict.

So, see yourself as a target but never a victim!

With knowledge comes empowerment!

What Bullies Want You to Believe & What You Should Believe

Understand that bullies thrive on power and control. If they can’t control you, they’ll control how others view you. Also, they’ll use redundancy and repetition to make you believe their lies too. Here’s what they’re most likely to try and get you to think of yourself and what you should believe:

1.What bullies want you to believe

Apart from us, you can do nothing, you are nothing, and you never will be.

What you should believe

Apart from you, I’m better off. I can do anything I set my mind to do, I’m somebody, and later down the line, I’m going to be great and do great things.

2. What bullies want you to believe

You’ll never find happiness without our permission.

What you should believe

I don’t need your permission to be happy. I’m much happier without losers like you in my life.

3. What bullies want you to believe

Nobody will ever like or love you.

What you should believe

Maybe you never will, but I don’t mind because you don’t matter. There will be others who’ll love me for me. I’ll find my tribe.

4. What bullies want you to believe

You’re nothing without our approval.

What you should believe

I’m nothing with it because you are nothing. I don’t need your “approval” because it will never define me. Your opinion matters not because, for something to matter, you must first value it.

Therefore, always counter the statements, including the unspoken ones. You’ll be surprised at what it will do for your self-esteem and your spirit!

With knowledge comes empowerment!

3 Reasons Targets Fear Setting Boundaries

All too often, targets of bullying have a hard time setting boundaries. Many just keep their mouths shut, grin and bear it while others wipe their feet all over them. They suffer in silence and obscurity, which only further damages their mental health. If being used as a rug hurts so much, why do they allow it to continue?

There are several reasons:

1. They don’t have the confidence.

Many targets of bullying feel helpless and simply think it wouldn’t do them any good. So, they see no point in speaking up because they know that they’ll likely get bullied worse for it. It takes confidence to set boundaries, which, sadly, is something a few bullying targets have.

Also, as we know, bullies don’t respect boundaries because they don’t acknowledge them. In their minds, you’re a target and, to them, a target has no rights and deserves no human dignity. Bullies don’t see targets as human beings deserving of the same human rights as everyone else. That’s a fact.

2. They feel powerless to stop the abuse.

Again, setting boundaries is anything but easy- it’s one of the hardest things to do after people bully you for so long and brainwash you into thinking you’re to blame for their horrid behavior.

Many targets have been abused for so long that they’ve “gotten used to it.” In other words, bullies and their sycophants have conditioned the targets to take the abuse and allow them to ride roughshod over them. Many times, targets have been fooled into believing that setting boundaries is selfish.

This is why many targets cave in to the bullies’ demands. They feel it’s safer just to give them what they want and pacify them.

3. They fear the bullies will retaliate.

If you’re a target of bullying, you may badly want to tell your abusers to knock it off. You may want to tell them to get the hell away from you and stay away. You may even want to fight back, but you don’t know how they may react.

Another thing you don’t know is whether they’ll accept your boundaries, nor if they’ll want to accept them. You know that there’s a chance the bullies may act violently toward you for having the chutzpah to speak against their abuse.

Bullies despise even a hint of opposition because they see it as your challenging their power and perceived authority. And they’ll do whatever they can to tighten their grip if they suspect you’re defying them. And sometimes, things get dangerous, and you must do it scared.

But what they don’t realize is this. When you set boundaries, you enact your autonomy and speak from a place of self-care and self-love. You decide what you will and won’t tolerate. You take your power back.

However!

Before you’re able to do that, you must be clear of what you will not accept.

It takes uber-confidence to stand up to a bully. It would be best if you also gave up your old self-protective behaviors – those you tried in the past that failed, which are ways your bullies and a few other abusers in your life probably conditioned you to respond.

1. You must stop over-apologizing.

2. You must stop trying to explain yourself to anyone.

3. You must stop trying to figure out what made the bullies so hostile.

4. You must stop wondering what you did wrong.

5. You must stop wondering if something’s wrong with you.

6. You must stop asking, “why me.”

Before you can stand up to abuse, you must squash the mentality that compels you to do any of the above mentioned.

You must understand that all the why me, why this, why that, gets you nowhere. And all the wracking your brains wondering and trying to figure out what’s wrong also serves no purpose. It’s a complete waste of time and only makes you feel worse.

Instead, be real with yourself and conclude that your bullies are just a bunch of ignorant, moronic jackasses who lack character and live fake existences. You must also learn to trust yourself, which includes trusting your body and how it feels. Trust everything you see, hear, feel, sense, and the vibes you pick up from the people around you. And finally, trust your decisions.

It also takes dogged determination:

1. Even if your bullies rationalize and justify their behavior, you won’t take their crap.

2. Even if they blame you for their despicable behavior, you won’t take it.

3. Even if they tell you that you’re crazy or mentally imbalanced, you won’t take it.

4. Even if they call you a bitch, an asshole, or any other degrading name, you won’t take it.

5. Even if you made a mistake and your bullies call it out in an abusive manner, you won’t take it.

6. And, for the love of Pete! If the bullies commit physical violence, you definitely won’t take that! Get the police involved, file charges, and sue for any damages! Or, put up those dukes and throw down if you need to!

And it’ll take calling your bullies out every single time they cross the line.

You can say:

“Stop it!”

“Cut it out!”

“Knock it off!”

“Get away from me!”

“Get out!”

positive bullied victim says NO

You get power just by loudly giving either one of these commands. And who knows? I’m not making any guarantees here, but you might shock your bullies back to reality and make them leave you alone. There were times when I was pleasantly surprised, and it worked for me.

You do not have to walk on eggshells around anyone! Know that you do have a choice and a voice. You can choose not to accept the bullies’ behavior. You have more power than you know.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

You Should Always Address Bullying in The Early Stages. Here’s Why:

My grandmother once told me this: “Never. And I mean never let anyone get comfortable with abusing and mistreating you.”

She was right. By the time she gave me that little gold nugget of wisdom, it was already too late. I was in high school and had been a target of bullying since moving to *Oakley School District in the sixth grade. But right then, I understood what my very wise grandmother meant and why she gave me that advice.

Here’s what Uma (what I called my maternal grandmother) had already known by being a people-watcher and very good at people-reading:

Once the mistreatment of a person has gone on for so long, the people around them get comfortable with mistreating that person. They grow so accustomed to being cruel to the person that they don’t even think about, nor do they care about how they hurt that person. Even worse, they come to expect the target the take the abuse without question, without talking back, speaking about it, and without defending themselves.

Put another way, if a target firmly stands up to bad treatment in the early stages of being targeted, it’s more likely that others will respect his right to be treated well and either leave him alone or began treating him better.

Whereas, if the target lets the bullying go on for a long time, then begins to stand up for himself after getting fed up with being everyone’s doormat, others will more than likely be only angry and resentful of the person for daring to open his mouth about it. They will then double down in their abuse or eliminate him somehow.

Once a person gets comfortable in mistreating you, it’s much more difficult to fight. Therefore, always speak out the moment the bullying begins. Never let it go on for any length of time. The sooner you do, the easier it will be to assert your rights and avoid retaliation.

With knowledge comes empowerment!